Vargas Blues Band have a heavy release history originating in 1991, after being founded by Javier Vargas. The latest album “Heavy City Blues” is an amalgamation of everything that is expected with modern blues rock. The album is heavy and soft when it needs to be, balancing the shades of emotion very well. Fans of Joe Bonamassa may find similarities to attach themselves to. Vargas Blues Band however are less virtuoso than the guitar hero and songs like ‘Rock ‘N’ Roll Circus’ demonstrate a different edge, definitely being heavy but also catchy and something that would appear on a “Top 100 Driving Songs” playlist.
‘Searching For Love’ brings in the classic Whitesnake vibes, a swinging ballad-esque song with a floating guitar melody coursing throughout. This is almost a description of the whole album, seemingly being a platform for the guitar work. Though this can be good sometimes it comes across as an already painted canvas but the artist continues to add detail that doesn’t need to be there. That being said ‘Back To My Roots’ balances guitar leads and the rhythmic work well and gives off a classic 80s vibe, whilst at the same time plodding along with self-indulgence. There are enough riffs to make 48 minutes pass by enjoyably, see ‘Hush Don’t Cry’, ‘Shake Baby Shake’ and ‘Sin City’.
On the whole the album takes most of the necessary components of a heavy blues album but fails to add the dosage of originality that sets Joe Bonamassa, Deep Purple, and other bands apart. The album is enjoyable to listen to however and especially sitting in the sun over a drink or driving along to. It may not be on repeat but a listen once in a while can make you feel a lot better on that slightly darker day. It’s a classic rock album filled with classic rock songs, sadly released in the wrong era.